After leaving Willemstad, Curacao, the ship traveled around the northernmost point of Aruba overnight, and we woke up in port...read more →
After a somewhat rocking/rolling evening, we arrived at Princess Cays, our first port-of-call on the Southern Caribbean cruise. (Cruising tip: secure all loose objects before going to bed or you’ll be driven mad by the noises and stumble sleepily about your stateroom kicking and punching things until the noises cease. Also, take the soda cans out of the mini-fridge.)
A little bit about Princess Cays… Princess Cruises likes to make it sound like a private island, but it’s a tiny bit of a long, thin island called Eleuthera. This little section at the southern part of Eleuthera is a resort area owned by Princess. It mainly consists of a small harbor, several beaches, cabanas and cabinettes to rent, cabana bars, and gift stores. There was a variety of equipment to rent, like kayaks, canoes, snorkels, etc. There were also some excursions available, but nothing that tempted us, as much of it was available at later ports of call, too.
It all seemed terribly commercial. Clamshells – a kind of two-person, shell-shaped, tent-like shelter were around $30 to rent. Just to sit in them. Oy.
The hubs and I elected to save our money on Princess Cays and simply chill out on a lounger (those were free!) and enjoy being somewhere warmer than home (75 degrees F in December). We enjoyed a Caribbean barbecue buffet on Princess Cays, strolled around the beach, watched some fish, listened to birdsong, lay on loungers (slathered in sunblock of course), and took a quick dip in the still-cold ocean. And had some fine alcoholic beverages, of course. It was all very low-key, but that was fine by us at the point. It’s a vacation after all, and we wanted to relax.
However, it was definitely not my favorite port-of-call, and if I cruise in the Caribbean again (more on that later), I will try to avoid going there, or at least have a really solid game plan for getting out of the resort and into Eleuthera – there is apparently a nice native plant preserve there, and a beach with pink sand. I was so close to (and yet so far from) a pink sand beach! Drats. There’s also a lot of history and culture on the island; all things we would have been interested in seeing and doing. Alas. Still, lounging is always relaxing and, as I said, we needed some chill time.
After about six hours of shore time, and eight in port (a lady fell in the spa and had to be taken to medical facilities, which delayed our departure) we left Princess Cays and headed to Willemstad, Curacao.